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Yohann Cauwenbergh

Student, Business Engineering, Catholic University of Leuven, Belgium

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What do you think of merit-based pay for teachers?

I don't know if the question is still relevant, I haven't followed it until recently but I heard it was quiet a debate at the Presidential election and wanted to know what he TED community thought of this.
Is merit-based pay for teachers a good idea... There are a lot of pros and cons about the topic: Will it help the education of the students (the main goal of the would-be arrangement)? Will the amount of teachers have a positive boost? Will it make the teachers too competitive, lessening the cooperation between them?

Please write your ideas.

(English is not my first language so excuse the grammatical errors and easy language)

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    Nov 27 2012: Hi Folks,
    On the face of it, merit based pay, performance bonus’, have a feel good aura.
    However, teachers do not go into their profession for the money.

    If we listen to teachers, we would discover teachers, by in large, desire substantially better support.
    Better tools.
    Better infrastructure.
    A society that values and promotes education.
    A society the values and promotes teachers.

    While most teachers would welcome better pay, given a choice they would prefer better support.

    Merit 'payout' is based on a false premise - teachers have control over their students.
    They do not.
    You can bring a horse to water, but you cannot make them drink.

    Lets look more deeply.
    Socio-economics play a pivotal role.
    Individual passion, desire, ambition, familial circumstance, biology and more impact minute to minute attitudes of students.
    All of which teachers have no control.

    Teachers cannot “fire” students.
    Teachers cannot “incent” students.

    Teachers can inspire. Motivate. Support.
    All of which have little to do with money.
    Much of which can be favorably impacted with professional tools and infrastructure.

    Educators reward, bonus, if you will, has allot to do with helping fellow human beings be all they can be.
    Little to do with money as a reward.

    The day our society eradicates child poverty, hunger.
    The day our society provides children preventive, on-going healthcare.
    The day our society recognizes no one asks to be born.
    The day our society recognizes children are victims or beneficiaries of circumstances not of their making.
    The day our society recognizes we are all in this together.
    Will be the first day of a new beginning.

    A beginning built on the foundation of our collective past, not anchored to it.
    A beginning constructing its’ future applying all we’ve learned.
    A beginning recognizing knowledge, institutions, human beings evolve.
    A beginning with no finish line.
    A beginning with no end.
    A future of perpetual beginnings.

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